The Meeting: A Working Mom’s Mad Morning Rush

You don't know the meaning of morning rush until you're sprinting to work for an early meeting with no spouse to help and a kid to drop off at daycare.

Most every morning as I prepare for work, I’m on my own. J works long hours and is gone to work long before we even get up (and oftentimes home after O is in bed). And while sometimes the evenings are hard, the morning rush is the worst. Trying to get myself ready, O ready, and get out the door all on my own and on time takes a lot of juggling, planning, and sometimes, luck.

But a particular morning this week was a kicker.

For starters, I had an 8:30 meeting, so I knew I couldn’t be late. It usually isn’t a concern if I’m five, ten, even 15 minutes late, as long as I get my work done. But, I can’t be late if I have a meeting. The morning started out OK. I was able to slip past Owen in the morning and actually take a shower and dry my hair halfway before he woke up. Even after he got up, he wasn’t his sometimes-fussy self. I was able to get the both of us ready with relative ease. Except when it came to the morning nursing session. Owen must have been famished, because he hung out for an extra-long time, putting us a little behind schedule.

Finally, he finished up and I could take the milk I had pumped while he was nursing and put it in his last bottle for the day. Since we were running late, and now O was starting to get a little tired, I ushered him into the car seat where he could nap and rushed out the door a little too quickly. In the process I forgot my cell phone. I realized I forgot my cell when I ran into a traffic jam on the way to work. I wanted to call my boss to tell him I’d be late. No can do if I don’t have a cell phone.

I sighed, but figured I’d just get caught up on meeting notes when I got in. Then I felt a familiar rumbling in my stomach, and realized I had forgotten to eat breakfast. Again. I started thinking of possible drive-thru restaurants where I could score some breakfast. All I could come up with were Burger Kings, McDonalds, etc. and I just didn’t feel like a grease-laden breakfast that morning. So I figured I’d just go without and try to score something at work.

I finally got to O’s daycare and dropped him off. Jumped back in the car and remembered there was a little coffeehouse not far from his daycare, and decided I’d stop there for some breakfast. I was really hungry at this point, traffic was backed up everywhere for some reason, and I figured it couldn’t hurt to stop. I got a blueberry scone (delicious) and chai tea (also delic) and hopped back in my car. As I was driving (or stopping) through traffic back to work I started to look for my wallet. I couldn’t find it. I started to panic. Did I leave it at the coffeehouse? I turned around and went back to check for it.

As I walked in, a man I had noticed smoking a cigarette out front earlier was now inside the coffeehouse and told me they had my wallet. I breathed a sigh of relief and thanked him. Then I proceeded to wait six eons for some lady to decide on her order. I hopped from one foot to another, anxious to know if it was really my wallet they had found. Finally, the lady stepped away and I rushed the counter. “You have my wallet,” I said, to the lady at the counter. Both hopeful, pleading, and questioning all at the same time. She was like “Yeah, we do!” And she handed it over. Forever grateful, I thanked her, grabbed the wallet and ran out the front door. As I left, I extended a pleasant nod toward the man who originally told me they had found my wallet.

I jumped in my car and pulled away before I even figured to look inside. I realized then that whoever had turned my wallet in had taken the liberty of cleaning out all my cash. No credit cards were touched, and they didn’t steal my checks. I breathed a sigh of releif for the small things, but I was still mad as all get-out. I usually don’t carry cash, but that morning I had a decent amount in my wallet. Oh well, what could I do?

I continued my drive to work, thinking maybe, just maybe I could make it for some of my 8:30 meeting. As I drove in, I spilled tea all over my pants. At this point, I seriously wanted to cry, but I held it all together. I parked my car, walked the two blocks to work, rode the elevator up to our floor and ran into the office to prepare for the meeting.

Only to find out it was cancelled.

10 thoughts on “The Meeting: A Working Mom’s Mad Morning Rush

  1. selfmademom says:

    What a nightmare! Can you get a blackberry for work? I find that the blackberry saves me when a cell phone cannot. Plus, it has a phone on it too! Downside- blackberry addiction.

  2. You deserve a huge virtual hug. I wanted to cry just reading your message. I absolutely feel your pain.Just when you think nothing else could go wrong, three more things go wrong.

    The good news is, maybe you got all of your bad kharma out of the way for the next two months.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Ditto on the virtual hug…When it rains, it really poors.

    It’s impossible to get out of the house on time ever morning, especially with my son screaming “Mommy. Mommy. Mommy” every five seconds.

    Any tips you can provide on making a smooth exit would be much appreciated.

  4. Oh man, what a morning! I can’t help but smile because we’ve all been there.

    Even when I don’t have a “bad morning” I’m surprised how long it takes me to actually get into work. I get up at 6 a.m., yet somedays I’m lucky if I get in before 9 a.m. Then you got young guy joe-schmo who can’t manage to wake his ass up until 8:30 a.m. but gets in the same time as me. That’s life for ya.

  5. Oh, Tela! That just sucks! I didn’t realize that morning that you have been through all the other crap, too. Yuck. And hugs!

  6. Wow. that’s just…sucky.

  7. Modern Mama says:

    I’m sorry to hear about that horrible morning! I hear ya about lateness. I am just constantly 10 minutes late for work. If I actually walk in on time I consider myself very early. I haven’t gotten any grief about it…yet. Do you all ever read ‘Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff?” I am usually a tightly-wound, high-strung person, but I have been trying to read that book and take it to heart. I think it helps put those everyday annoyances in perspective and allows us to just laugh and what insanity comes our way!

  8. A blackberry is an interesting idea, selfmademom, but part of me just doesn’t want to be that tied to work!

    Anonymous, I will ask some working moms for tips on a smooth exit and post something very soon. Good idea!

  9. Oh, and I meant to thank everyone for their kind words, too. I figured other moms out there experienced mornings just like this–or worse!

    It still burns me up that someone would steal my money…

  10. BlondeMom says:

    I hope you were able to leave early that day! What a nightmare! Next time, hopefully, someone could call you to say the meeting had been cancelled.

    I have two little ones and I am ALWAYS LATE to work. And most mornings my husband takes our oldest daughter and I take our youngest to daycare. I still can’t get it together. Sigh…

    I love the concept of this blog! Found you via the Job Mom blog.

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